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Nick Jr. mag nixed amid Viacom cuts

MTV cancels publication

MTV wound down a difficult week of layoffs by confirming that Nick Jr., its magazine tied to the Nick Jr. programming block, will cease publication after the current issue comes out in April.

Mag staffers, totaling fewer than 20, could still be reassigned within Viacom.

Older-skewing Nick mag would continue, reps said.

There is a possibility that Nick Jr. magazine could be reborn in another form. In a memo to staffers, editor-in-chief Freddi Greenberg wrote that “plans are in the works for Nickelodeon to publish a magazine just for kids, and several of my staff members who you’ve met over the years will be working on that project.”

Nick Jr. is the 9 a.m.-2 p.m. block aimed at preschool auds; it features shows such as “Dora the Explorer” and “Blue’s Clues.” Its magazine was launched eight years ago as a means of targeting parents and children in the under-12 set.

Nickelodeon and the larger “family and kids” group of which it’s a part have so far not been hit hard by layoffs.

In other layoff news, Paul DeBenedittis, MTV exec veepee of multiplatform programming, content strategy and scheduling has exited, along with Salli Frattini, senior veep and executive in charge of production at MTV.

Also Thursday, the company confirmed published reports that the entertainment group — which includes Spike and Comedy Central — could be leaving its 1775 Broadway home when the lease is up at the end of this year and moving downtown to offices at 345 Hudson St.

Reps, however, cautioned that the deal was not final.

News has given rise to speculation that Viacom could also vacate its famed 1515 Broadway location, home to MTV and the Times Square studio used for “Total Request Live.”

While the lease at the site won’t expire for a few years, insiders said that if the company wants new digs, it will need to begin looking pretty soon.

Company occupies millions of square feet at 1515 Broadway, while the Hudson street locale consists of only several hundred thousand feet.

MTV could possibly rent space at a nearby downtown locale.

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